/ Blog / The ageing population: threat or opportunity for insurance companies?

The ageing population: threat or opportunity for insurance companies?

The ageing population is an ongoing phenomenon. As the number of elderly people increases, so does the demand for care. Moreover, we also see a change in the wishes and expectations of senior citizens.

This evolution not only has a major impact on the healthcare sector, but also on the risk landscape of insurers. Should they see the increasing ageing of the population as a threat or as an opportunity? And how can they respond to it efficiently?

The ageing population in figures

The ageing of the population is a fact. Figures show the following:

  • Today, more than 25% of the European population is over 60.
  • By 2050, almost 1/4 of the world's population will be 60 or over.
  • By 2050, the number of over-60s will have tripled compared to 1955. The number of people over 80 will even be 9 times higher (UN, 2017). 
  • It is estimated that by 2060 there will be 44.4 million over-60s in Europe who will need help with their daily activities.
  • The overall need for long-term care will increase by 80% between 2015 and 2060. Long-term care for the over-80s will triple over the next 50 years (GCOA, 2018).

Consequences for insurers

An ageing population naturally leads to more health problems. People live in relative health for longer and longer. Moreover, the wishes and expectations of senior citizens change over the years.

Many older people want to live at home for longer or prefer hybrid care options (e.g. with family or friends as caregivers), they are becoming increasingly digital and open to sharing health data - especially if this improves their wellbeing.

All these changes are not necessarily a problem for insurers: they can also be seized as an opportunity. By developing new services that meet the expectations of older customers, insurers can create added value. In this approach, the role of the insurer is not merely reactive, but becomes proactive. A shift from protector to preventer.

How to turn an ageing population into an opportunity as an insurer

Insurance companies can help address the challenges faced by the healthcare industry and the ageing population. In doing so, they can increase their customer focus in an increasingly competitive market.

Do you want to know how to tackle this as an insurer? Discover all about it in our report "Silver Economy for Insurers, May 2021" in which we discuss the biggest challenges insurers will face and how you can tackle them to create added value for your customers.